A man from Gorton has been convicted of two offences of fly-tipping, thanks to evidence supplied to Manchester City Council by local residents.
Ilie Costel Baltatu was sentenced to 200 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay costs totalling £585, after witnesses from the local community came forward to provide evidence which proved his guilt in carrying out two major fly-tips in the Rusholme area.
A resident spotted Baltatu, 48, directing a gang of men as they dumped waste from the rear of two vehicles in an alleyway to the rear of Oxney Road on 22 July 2018. On noticing this happening, the witness approached the men to tell them that what they were doing was illegal. The group immediately became hostile, before Baltatu approached the witness, put an arm around him and told him "not to worry". When the witness returned his property and took photographs of the crime in action, Baltatu and the gang of men threw stones at his windows.
The witness supplied the council with the photographs he had taken, plus a witness statement to allow the case to be taken forward.
On 24 October 2018, Baltatu was again witnessed by a local resident instructing and assisting a group of men as they fly-tipped waste, this time from the rear of a black Mercedes van in the alley to the rear of Fleeson Street, Rusholme. The resident took a photograph and referred the incident to Manchester City Council for investigation.
The black van involved in the Fleeson Street incident was later seized and taken off the road by Greater Manchester Police, after the council alerted them to its involvement in fly-tipping.
Baltatu, of Glencastle Road, Gorton, was identified by Greater Manchester Police, through a controlled viewing of the evidence. He was invited for an interview under caution on two occasions for each offence by the council’s Environmental Crimes Team, but failed to respond.
After Baltatu failed to attend an initial court hearing on 10 July 2019, a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Baltatu appeared at Manchester Magistrates' Court on 18 September 2019 and pleaded guilty to two offences of fly-tipping. He was handed a 12-month community order, under which he will carry out 200 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to pay £500 court costs and an £85 victim surcharge.
Executive Member for Neighbourhoods, Councillor Rabnawaz Akbar, said: “I’d like to pay tribute to the Rusholme residents who refused to bow to Baltatu’s intimidating behaviour and made sure that he was punished by coming forward to tell us about his crimes.
“It’s pleasing to know that one of the vehicles Baltatu and his gang used has been taken off the streets and that he will have to pay communities back through unpaid work.
“When members of the public support us by providing evidence, we act on that and do everything in our power to take the offenders to court. We have already prosecuted 191 offenders for fly-tipping and associated crimes this year and this constant effort will continue.”
If you have evidence which could help the council to prosecute a fly-tipper, please go to www.manchester.gov.uk/flytipping.